Despite demand from several quarters to remove, Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958 Assam government as per Section 3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, has declared the entire State of Assam as “Disturbed Area for another six month. In an official communique the state government stated , “Consequent upon review of law and order situation in Assam, in the past six months, the State Government vide a Notification issued to this effect by the Home & Political Department, Assam and as per Section 3 of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, has declared the entire State of Assam as “Disturbed Area” w.e.f 28-08-2019 upto six months unless withdrawn earlier.”
- Earlier security forces engaged in counter-insurgency operations in Assam favoured the AFSPA to remain applicable in the entire state as final NRC was published last week and state is in high alert.
- Around 218 companies of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) are deployed in the state to tackle any possible disturbance post NRC publication. Already there is some protest and resentment pertaining to the NRC.
- Recently the Supreme Court rejected the Assam and Centre government’s plea for conducting 20 per cent sample re-verification of the draft NRC published on July 30 last year in districts bordering Bangladesh.
- NRC coordinator, Prateek Hajela in the court stated that 27 re-verification is already done. The final NRC has identified 19, 06,657 people who could not be included in the final NRC.
- The state police too have favoured continuation of AFSPA, especially since the sensitive process of updation of the NRC is on. “Anti-talks ULFA militants is still active in Upper Assam”.
- While AFSPA has been lifted from Tripura and Meghalaya, in Nagaland there is widespread demand to withdraw the Act from the state.
- In Manipur, AFSPA is in force, except in seven assembly constituencies of Imphal. In Arunachal Pradesh, areas under AFSPA have been halved to those under eight police stations, besides Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts.